WASHINGTON, Sept 13 (APP): As President Trump follows up on his
election promises to enforce stringent immigration laws, his
administration is mulling cutting the number of refugees the United
States could allow to come to less than 50,000, the lowest number since
at least 1980, according to a report by the New York Times citing
The media reports about reducing the number of refugees surfaced amid
a Supreme Court decision that on Tuesday withheld a decision by a lower-court that would have allowed more refugees to enter the country as against Trump’s executive order on immigration.
The lower-court decision would have allowed a group of about 24,000 refugees, who have assurances from sponsors to enter the United States.
The government objected to it and approached the Supreme Court which withheld the order, allowing the administration to implement the
president’s executive order.
President Trump during his 2016 election campaign had promised to
come hard on illegal immigrants and is now even working to limit the
number of legal immigrants. He also sought to reduce the number of
refugees as part of efforts to strengthen national security against
threats of terrorism.
Soon after taking over in January, President Trump capped the number
of refugees who could be admitted to the United States at 50,000, less
than half the 110,000 refugees President Barack Obama said should be admitted in 2016, the NYT report said.
However, there are indication that the government is considering to
even lower that number as the deadline approached for President Trump to issue an annual number for refugees as per required by the Refugee Act
of 1980. Under the act, the president in consultation with the
Congress must come up with the number by the start of each fiscal year
on the refugee ceiling. The fiscal year starts from October 1.
According to the reports, a senior White House aide and some
officials from the Homeland Security are pushing for cutting the number
of refugees citing security concerns. However, officials at the National Security Council, State Department and Pentagon are opposing the
“Should Mr Trump move ahead with scaling back refugee resettlement,
it would be the second time in as many weeks that he has used executive authority to reduce the influx of immigrants,” the report added, citing
a recent decision by the president to end a programme in six months that
had allowed children brought to the country illegally from being deported.
The debate on lowering the number of refugees has alarmed people in
the backdrop of the refugee crisis unfolding in several parts of the
world. The United States has a history of accepting people fleeing
violence and persecution in their countries.